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The reviews are in for Apple’s iPad Pro, which went on sale earlier this morning ahead of its retail launch later this week.
So, what’s this device good for? Is it simply a jumbo-sized iPad in the same sense as the iPad was called just an oversized iPhone?
Does the significant screen size increase bring any tangible benefits to your mobile computing beyond just a bigger canvas for your apps?
What about the Apple Pencil and Apple’s pricey keyboard cover, are these optional add-ons or essential accessories? Answers to these questions differ from one reviewer to another. Here’s our roundup of the best iPad Pro reviews on the web.
iPad Pro represents the start of something completely new for Apple and its developers. The power, versatility, and promise of iPad Pro has not been seen since the original iPad.
iPad Pro is going to open up segments of the market that never considered using an iPad before. In my opinion, this device isn’t going to cannibalize existing iPad sales, but rather add to them.
John Gruber’s take:
The speakers are surprisingly loud. If you use your iPad as a small TV, the audio improvements might be more meaningful than the bigger display. Battery life is simply outstanding. I didn’t even plug it in once between Monday and Friday, and it still had plenty of charge left. I’ve been using it for eight continuous hours as I type this sentence, and it still has more than 50 percent of a charge remaining.
I think even Apple’s own apps are still figuring out how best to arrange layouts on this larger display. For example, in Mail, when the iPad Pro is in portrait, it only shows one column at a time. I think there’s clearly enough room horizontally, even in portrait, for a two-pane (narrow list of messages on left, wide message detail on right) layout.
The iPad Pro in portrait is as wide as the iPad Air in landscape — and the iPad Air in landscape uses two panes for Mail. Third-party developers are going to want to adjust their apps after they get a feel for what it’s like to use the iPad Pro for real.
After using both his iMac and the iPad Pro for the past week Gruber did something he’s never once done before:
I reached up and tried to touch something on the display. Ten minutes later I did it again. I point this out not to argue that I think MacBooks should have touch screens, but simply as an observation that even a lifelong Mac user can quickly get accustomed to the iPad Pro as a laptop.
Federico Viticci, probably the biggest proponent of the iPad as a true PC replacement, is adamant that the device represents a slam dunk in terms of being the ultimate canvas for your work.
The device I’ve used every day for a year to get my work done for this site now seems tiny and limited, with small apps, less content shown on screen, and a constrained multitasking interface.
I know that it’s only been a week, and I do believe that the Air 2 is a great device for lots of people, but I feel like all the work I’ve done on the iPad and iOS has led me to this point. I’m ready to take my iPad setup to the next level, and I think my workflow can benefit from improved hardware and a more capable version of iOS.
And in case you had any doubts, Viticci is going to switch to the iPad Pro.
Walt Mossberg, reviewing the iPad Pro for The Verge, views the device as the ultimate content consumption tablet, but thinks it’s still not a viable PC replacement due to Apple’s lacking keyboard accessory:
You can get a lot more done with iPad apps than with the paltry selection of tablet / touch-first apps available for the Surface. But, because Apple hasn’t made a great keyboard, the iPad Pro isn’t a complete replacement for a great laptop like the MacBook Air — even for a tablet guy like me.
Setting out to test Apple’s claims that the iPad Pro’s A9X processor is faster than 80 percent of notebooks, writer Scott Stein ran some synthetic Geekbench benchmark that showed the device performing well against ordinary notebooks running Intel Core i3 chips, “but using the Jetstream browser benchmark, a MacBook Pro and Surface Pro 4 came out on top.”
I’ll tell you right now who’s going to want an iPad Pro: anyone who draws or works with images. Its killer app doesn’t even come in the box. The Pencil, Apple’s new stylus is sold separately, for $99, £79 or AU$165.
It’s specifically designed to work with the iPad Pro, and it blows away any other stylus I’ve ever used , even Microsoft’s Surface Pen. It’s fast, accurate, pressure-sensitive, comfortable, and for apps that support it, glorious.
Stein called the iPad Pro “a killer creative canvas with laptop-replacement dreams.”
“I want the iPad to eat the Mac, the way the iPhone ate the iPod. But iOS needs to fully change with it,” he wrote. “The iPad Pro feels like the top half of a new futuristic superpowered laptop. I want the bottom half, too.”
Andrew Cunningham was impressed by the iPad Pro’s MacBook-like computing speed, with all the virtues and limitations of iOS when it comes to replacing the PC.
It’s best to think of the iPad Pro as a starting point, especially for iOS 9. These multitasking features are still brand-new, and there’s a lot of low-hanging fruit to pick in future iOS 9 revisions and into iOS 10. My biggest gripes with the iPad Pro are with the software rather than the hardware, and that means that most of them can be fixed given enough time and enough feature requests.
It took Microsoft three tries to really nail down the Surface Pro concept, and given a couple of iOS updates the iPad Pro has room to grow into a more versatile laptop replacement without necessarily giving up the things that people like about iOS.
By the way, you might want to block out the next two hours of your time to read Ars’s incredibly detailed iPad Pro review, but then again—that’s what we love about the site.
For Matthew Panzarino, the iPad Pro is the death of Steve Jobs’s ‘PCs are trucks, tablets are cars’ metaphor in that there’s no longer just the ‘truck’ of the desktop and laptop and the ‘car’ of the phone.
There are gradations of tone in between, and the iPad Pro absolutely, 100% could be the central computing device for a home. Many days, I run TechCrunch from my phone. On those days, the ‘traditional’ computers in my household lie dormant, completely. If you think this is an edge case, you are blinding yourself to the way the world has changed.
It’s going to take some time and experimentation to figure this out. Despite my irritation at the way that the tablet space is analyzed, I am not willing to declare the personal computer (non-Cupertino definition) ‘dead’. I’ll leave that to the bombasts. But there is a certain (sorry) norm-core computing demographic that could very well end up with an iPad Pro as the ’enhanced’ component to their smartphone, which is their real computer.
Joanna Stern, writing for the Journal:
There’s one thing the iPad has over all other laptops and competing tablets though: incredible apps. The Pro helped me realize that I’ve been living in the past, using legacy desktop programs to accomplish things.
And this on battery life:
Apple has the real edge over Microsoft on battery life, though. With brightness at 75%, the Pro streamed Netflix for eight hours and 15 minutes. The Surface Pro 4 conked out 2.5 hours sooner. (My Web browsing test showed similar results.) The big downside to the Pro’s big battery is that it takes nearly 5 hours to recharge. My MacBook Air reaches 100% in two hours.
David Pierce on the A9X:
The A9X chip and 4 gigabytes of RAM make everything fantastically fast: even on a huge, high-res screen, I couldn’t find an app or game that would stutter. The best way to make the iPad do more stuff was to give it a processor that can handle the load; Apple did that and then some.
And this on Apple’s optional stylus accessory:
The Pencil is the more important accessory. This long, white, paintbrush-looking stylus is central to the notion that the iPad Pro is for doing anything, any way you want.
In apps that support it, the Pencil is an unbelievably accurate, fine instrument for creation or control. When you write or draw, it feels like ink is coming straight from its tip. You can shade with the side of the Pencil, write in beautiful calligraphy, or sketch with amazing accuracy.
The Pencil works so well because it gets special access to the Pro’s software. Whenever your iPad detects the Pencil touching the display, it doubles the screen’s read rate so it checks for movement 240 times a second. That, plus pressure sensitivity and real-time measuring of the Pencil’s angle and position, means the Pencil puts out much more data than you’ll get from any other stylus. You can use others, but the Pencil is special.
“If there’s a touchscreen revolution underway, it’s going to happen slowly, an app and an accessory at a time. That’s OK. The iPad Pro is a fantastic tablet, not to mention the first iPad in ages that has an obvious value next to our giant smartphones,” he said.
“It starts as a big, powerful, beautiful screen, and with the right accessories and apps can be almost any kind of device you want. So, yeah: size matters.”
Additional reviews: FastCompany, Bloomberg, TechRadar, The Telegraph
The iPad Pro is available for purchase starting at $799 for the 32-gigabyte Wi-Fi-only edition via the Apple online store and brick and mortar Apple retails stores. The 128GB edition with Wi-Fi is $999 and the flagship 128GB Wi-Fi + Cellular version is $1,079.
The Apple Pencil is $99 and Apple’s Smart Keyboard for the device is $169.
Will you be ordering an iPad Pro? Why, or why not?
You're reading Ipad Pro Review Roundup: A New Canvas For Productivity And Content Creation
I prefer to create, edit, and design documents on Mac. However, with the availability of a wide range of high-quality document creation apps for the iPhone, I choose my iOS device to create praiseworthy documents whenever I’m on the go.
You can effortlessly create good-looking documents, edit them using numerous tools, and sync them with your favorite cloud services. Primarily based on functionality, these are the best document creation apps for the iPhone and iPad. Let’s head over to know more about these top apps!
1. Google Docs
“Google Docs” is a top class document creator app. You can effortlessly create a new document and will be able to edit it on the move. It also allows you to open, edit and save Microsoft Word documents right from inside the app.
2. Microsoft Office (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Office Lens)
Microsoft Office has always been one of the best document creation suites. It makes document creation fast and easy. You can choose from real document layout or easy-to-read layout to create a top quality document.
It lets you view your email attachments and access them from Dropbox, OneDrive, SharePoint. Add charts, images, tables, and footnotes to improve the quality of the documents. Moreover, you can print your files via AirPrint-enabled printers.
These Office apps are available for free.
3. iWork from Apple
iWork consists of three apps Pages, Keynote, and Numbers. With pages, you can easily create top class documents and choose from various tools to enrich them.
4. OfficeSuite & PDF editor
A Cloud storage manager allows you to access your documents anywhere in the world. You can edit those documents and upload in the cloud. MobySystems Drive offers you 5GB free cloud space once you sign in. You get cloud support of Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive, OneDrive for Business, Yandex Drive and Box.
5. Documents by Readdle
Documents by Readdle is incredible. It is a hub for all your office files and more. It allows you to read, listen, view and annotate various file formats. This app also acts as your music and video player, as well as a file downloader. A web browser is built right into it, which is easy to access. You have to swipe left on a tag, and you are inside a browser.
The app also acts as your file manager and has the ability to connect with various services like Dropbox, Google Drive, One Drive, FTP Server, etc. Overall it is a must-have app for your device. It takes your iPhone to the next level!
6. Polaris Office
Used by over 90 million people across the world, this compact app is a respectable choice for creating, opening, editing, saving, and storing your documents.
7. WPS Office
This app has been around since 1989. I first used WPS Office in 2014 when it came pre-installed with an Android phone I bought. Since then, I have had good reviews for them. WPS Office is an excellent document viewer and editing app you can download. I remember using it for some of my college works. The app is used by millions and maintains good ratings on the App Store.
WPS Office also supports the automatic saving of your documents to various cloud services like Dropbox, Google Drive, Box, One Drive, etc. On top of everything, it has Night Mode.
That’s all for now!
You may want to check out these special app lists like;
The founder of iGeeksBlog, Dhvanesh, is an Apple aficionado, who cannot stand even a slight innuendo about Apple products. He dons the cap of editor-in-chief to make sure that articles match the quality standard before they are published.
Apple today refreshed its flagship iPad Pro models, bringing even more pro features such as a two-lens rear setup that includes wide and ultra-wide cameras and, for the first time in any Apple device, a sophisticated LiDAR sensor that can map your surroundings in 3D. The company also unveiled a new Magic Keyboard accessory designed specifically for this new iPad Pro that features a floating design, backlit keys and a built-in trackpad which lets you perform Multi-Touch gestures to navigate the entire tablet without ever lifting your hand.
The refreshed iPad Pro models look the same as previous ones they’ve replaced. Under the hood, however, it’s a whole different story.Introducing A12Z Bionic
What you get is the highest performance ever in an iPad.
Like its predecessor, the A12Z Bionic embeds Apple’s Neural Engine for hardware-accelerated machine learning and artificial intelligenceLiDAR scanner
A first for any Apple device to date, the new iPad Pro integrates a sophisticated laser-based LiDAR sensor on the back. Unlike infrared-based TrueDepth module that can capture depth data reliably at up to 20 inches away, the new LiDAR sensor can measure the distance to surrounding objects up to 5 meters away, allowing for a more detailed understanding of a scene.
It will power enhanced augmented reality experiences, with existing apps that use Apple’s ARKit framework automatically getting these improvements “for free”:
Instant AR placement
Improved motion capture
Enhances people occlusion.
And with a new Scene Geometry API, developers can tap the sensor to deliver specific features, including 3D object and environment scanning.
The LiDAR scanner improves the Measure app, making it faster and easier to automatically calculate someone’s height, while helpful vertical and edge guides automatically appear to let users more quickly and accurately measure objects. The Measure app also now comes with Ruler View for more granular measurements and allows users to save a list of all measurements, complete with screenshots for future use.
Some of the apps that will use the new sensor include:
Complete Anatomy: A new assessment tool will let physical therapists track patients’ mobility improvements throughout their recovery
Ikea Place: A new Studio mode will let you furnish entire rooms intelligently in AR with room sets and more.
Hot Lava: There’s a new AR mode that will transform your living room into a lava-filled obstacle course.
Shapr3D: This professional CAD modeling app will use the new sensor to automatically generate an accurate 2D floor plan and 3D model of a room.
Apple highlighted some of these apps in a promo video embedded below.
These LiDAR-enhanced features in the aforementioned apps will arrive later in 2023.Cameras and audio
The new iPad Pro adds a ten-megapixel ultra-wide rear camera next to the 12-megapixel wide camera. Both shoot video in 4K, with the new ultra-wide shooter providing optical zoom out two times.
Like the 16-inch MacBook Pro, the updated iPad Pro integrates what Apple calls “studio-quality microphones”, and there are five of them — three mics are up the top above the TrueDepth camera, one is out the back next to the cameras and a fifth mic is located on the left side. Like with the previous iPad Pro, there are four speakers that automatically adjusts to any orientation.Battery, networking and more Magic Keyboard with trackpad
Apple has refreshed the Smart Keyboard Folio for the new iPad Pro while introducing a brand new keyboard accessory with a built-in trackpad, marketed under the Magic Keyboard moniker.
For instance, iPadOS 13.4 provides a dynamic cursor in trackpad mode that “elegantly transforms to highlight user interface elements” as you interact with the trackpad. The new Magic Keyboard also supports multi-touch gestures and works with 2023 iPad Pros.
Best of all, it’s got full-size keys with a reliable scissor mechanism that delivers 1mm travel, protects your iPad Pro and enables smooth angle adjustment up to 130 degrees thanks to its floating design and cantilevered hinges.
All those perks come at a steep price, however — the Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro will set you back $299 for the 11-inch version and a whopping $349 for the 12.9-inch version when it becomes available for purchase in May.
iPadOS 13.4 with trackpad support will be available March 24.Pricing and availability
Available to order starting today on chúng tôi and in the Apple Store app in 30 countries and regions (arriving in stores starting next week), the new iPad Pro comes in Silver and Space Gray along with 256GB, 512GB and 1TB configurations.
The 11-incher starts at $799 for the Wi-Fi model and $949 for the LTE-enabled model, while the 12.9 incher starts at $999 for the Wi-Fi-only version and $1,149 for the Wi-Fi + Cellular mode.
These new models have replaced the previous-generation iPad Pros.Apple’s press release
Apple’s full press release follows right ahead.
Apple unveils new iPad Pro with breakthrough LiDAR Scanner and brings trackpad support to iPadOS
New Magic Keyboard Designed for iPad Pro Features a Floating Design, Backlit Keyboard and Trackpad, Delivering the Best Typing Experience Ever on iPad
With iPadOS 13.4, Apple brings trackpad support to iPad, giving customers an all-new way to interact with their iPad. Rather than copying the experience from macOS, trackpad support has been completely reimagined for iPad. As users move their finger across the trackpad, the pointer elegantly transforms to highlight user interface elements. Multi-Touch gestures on the trackpad make it fast and easy to navigate the entire system without users ever lifting their hand.
Apple today also introduced the new Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro. With a floating design with smooth angle adjustment, a backlit keyboard and trackpad, the Magic Keyboard delivers the best typing experience ever on iPad. The Magic Keyboard will be available for purchase in May.
“We’re making iPad even more capable and versatile by bringing trackpad support to iPadOS,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior vice president of Software Engineering. “We carefully considered the best way to integrate trackpad use into a touch-first environment while retaining everything our customers know and love about iPad. We’re thrilled to bring this new way of interacting with iPad to the millions of people using iPadOS today.”
Pro Performance with A12Z Bionic Chip
Built for the most demanding tasks, like editing 4K video or designing 3D models, iPad Pro gets another performance boost with the new A12Z Bionic chip. The eight-core GPU in the A12Z Bionic, along with an enhanced thermal architecture and tuned performance controllers, gives iPad Pro the highest performance ever in an iPad. Combined with the eight-core CPU and the powerful Neural Engine, which enables next-generation apps, there’s no other chip that can offer the incredible performance found in the thin and light design of iPad Pro. With great battery life lasting up to 10 hours,1 faster Wi-Fi connectivity2 and gigabit-class LTE that’s 60 percent faster3 with support for more LTE bands than any other tablet, customers can stay productive and creative all day.
The Pro camera system on iPad Pro features a 12MP Wide camera for capturing stunning photos and 4K video, and now includes a 10MP Ultra Wide camera that zooms out two times to capture a much wider field of view. Adding a second camera doubles the photo and video possibilities, enabling different perspectives and multi-camera use — a game changer for creative pros.
Pro Audio with Studio-Quality Mics
iPad Pro now features five studio-quality microphones for capturing super clean audio and the quietest details, and delivers an immersive sound experience with four-speaker audio that automatically adjusts to any orientation, no matter how it is held. The combination of pro cameras, pro audio and the large display make iPad Pro a versatile mobile studio for creative pros including filmmakers, video professionals, podcasters and other content creators.
Breakthrough LiDAR Scanner
The breakthrough LiDAR Scanner enables capabilities never before possible on any mobile device. The LiDAR Scanner measures the distance to surrounding objects up to 5 meters away, works both indoors and outdoors, and operates at the photon level at nano-second speeds. New depth frameworks in iPadOS combine depth points measured by the LiDAR Scanner, data from both cameras and motion sensors, and is enhanced by computer vision algorithms on the A12Z Bionic for a more detailed understanding of a scene. The tight integration of these elements enables a whole new class of AR experiences on iPad Pro.
Every existing ARKit app automatically gets instant AR placement, improved motion capture and people occlusion. Using the latest update to ARKit with a new Scene Geometry API, developers can harness the power of the new LiDAR Scanner to unleash scenarios never before possible.
The LiDAR Scanner improves the Measure app, making it faster and easier to automatically calculate someone’s height, while helpful vertical and edge guides automatically appear to let users more quickly and accurately measure objects. The Measure app also now comes with Ruler View for more granular measurements and allows users to save a list of all measurements, complete with screenshots for future use.
Trackpad Support Comes to iPadOS
Trackpad support in iPadOS is designed to work great with the apps customers use every day. From smoothly scrolling through web pages in Safari and photo libraries in Photos, to precisely editing text in Notes and quickly viewing and organizing your email in Mail, it’s a joy to use a trackpad with iPad. Most third-party apps work with no change at all, and developers can go even further with new APIs that let them deliver unique experiences in their apps.
Pro Accessories with Magic Keyboard
Joining the second-generation Apple Pencil4 and an updated Smart Keyboard Folio5 is the new Magic Keyboard. Attaching magnetically to iPad Pro, the Magic Keyboard puts the beautiful Multi-Touch screen on display with its floating design, working equally well on a lap or on a desk. Unique cantilevered hinges allow smooth adjustments of the viewing angle up to 130 degrees. The portable and protective design of the Magic Keyboard delivers a full-size keyboard with backlit keys and a scissor mechanism that delivers 1mm travel, delivering the best typing experience ever on iPad.
Pricing and Availability
The new iPad Pro is available to order starting today on chúng tôi and in the Apple Store app in 30 countries and regions, including the US. iPad Pro will be available in stores starting next week.
The new 11-inch and 12.9-inch iPad Pro will be available in silver and space gray finishes. A starting configuration of 128GB offers pro customers more room for their apps and content, along with 256GB, 512GB and 1TB configurations.
iPadOS 13.4 with trackpad support will be available on March 24 as a free software update for all iPad Pro models, iPad Air 2 and later, iPad 5th generation and later, and iPad mini 4 and later.
Trackpad support will be available on any iPad running iPadOS 13.4, and work with Apple’s Magic Mouse 2, Magic Trackpad 2 and the Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro. Third-party mice connected over Bluetooth or USB are also supported.
The Magic Keyboard for iPad Pro will be available for purchase in May for $299 (US) for the 11-inch iPad Pro and $349 (US) for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro with layouts for over 30 languages, including simplified Chinese, French, German, Japanese and Spanish.
The second-generation Apple Pencil for iPad Pro is available for $129 (US). The new Smart Keyboard Folio for the new iPad Pro is available in space gray for $179 (US) for the 11-inch iPad Pro and $199 (US) for the 12.9-inch iPad Pro with layouts for over 30 languages, including simplified Chinese, French, German, Japanese and Spanish.
Customers in the US can trade in their eligible device for an Apple Store Gift Card or credit toward their purchase. If the device isn’t eligible for credit, Apple will recycle it for free.
When customers buy online from Apple, they can make their iPad and Apple Pencil (2nd generation) their own with free engraving.
Customers get 3 percent Daily Cash when they buy iPad from Apple with Apple Card.
Customers can extend their limited warranty with AppleCare+ and get 24/7 priority access to technical support.
Every customer who buys iPad from Apple can enjoy free Personal Setup in-store or online, and receive guidance on how to customize their iPad, set up email, find apps from the App Store and more.
Earlier this week, Apple hosted its Spring Loaded event and finally unveiled its tracking device, AirTag. And with initial orders set to start tomorrow, the reviews are coming in.
Today, reviews for Apple’s newest accessory went live. Publications shared their thoughts on Apple’s AirTag, and the general consensus seems to be that it’s a pretty great device. Yes, it’s yet another cog in Apple’s overall ecosystem, something that only really works if you’re tucked safely under Apple’s blanket. But that’s not surprising in the slightest.
So, things are generally positive for the AirTag, but it also appears to be prone to scratching and scuffing. A small blemish, to be sure, but one that might not go over so well with some potential buyers.
In any event, here’s a quick roundup of some of the reviews for the new AirTag.The AirTag reviews are in
The Verge did something interesting: gave an AirTag to someone and had them set out into the city. Vjeran Pavic went out into the wild and Dieter Bohn was tasked with using an iPhone to track down that AirTag, which Pavic had put out there in the wild.
The results were pretty quick:
After a half-hour of walking around, I finally found him. He was standing on a street corner with no foot traffic whatsoever, which meant that the intermittent signals I got detailing his location came from a couple of iPhones in cars that were driving by.
However, Bohn also notes that the AirTags are just “one more thing” keeping folks on the iPhone, and that the AirTag is also prone to scuffing and scratching on both sides of the item finder.
Mostly, TC‘s review for Apple’s AirTag is positive, but notes that more testing is needed before coming to an ultimate decision. However, in that short time Matthew Panzarino does note that relying on Bluetooth means that physical obstacles can reduce discovery time. So, in some cases, it can take up to 30 seconds to locate an AirTag in another room.
The good news is that when that AirTag is found, as Apple said, the location is precise:
In my very limited testing so far, AirTag location range fits in with that basic Bluetooth expectation. Which means that it can be foiled by a lot of obstructions or walls or an unflattering signal bounce. It often took 30 seconds or more to get an initial location from an AirTag in another room, for instance. Once the location was received, however, the instructions to locate the device seemed to update quickly and were extremely accurate down to a few inches.
Mashable‘s Brenda Stolyar says that Apple’s AirTag is pretty boring, considering it’s just a Bluetooth item tracker. That’s probably pretty accurate. She notes that these accessories have been around for a while, and notes it’s kind of strange Apple would dedicate any time to this device during its spring event showcase, rather than just announcing them in a press release.
However, Stolyar also says that precision finding for AirTag, which relies on the ultra-wideband U1 chip (and needs an iPhone 11 or iPhone 12 to work) is pretty great:
One of the most frustrating feelings is when you lose your AirPods, trigger the sound from the Find My app, hear the sound, but still can’t find your AirPods.
The Precision Finding feature on the AirTags, certainly solves that pain point.
The feature uses the built-in U1 chip and accelerometer from the AirTag, along with ARKit and the gyroscope from the iPhone, to guide you towards the tracker using graphics, haptic, and sound. However, it’s worth noting that the feature is only compatible with the iPhone 11 and the iPhone 12.The videos reviews
Here’s a quick look at some of the video reviews, unboxings, and demos for AirTags out there in the wild.MKBHD James Rath Rene Ritchie UrAvgConsumer iJustine
So, AirTags go up for ordering on Friday, April 23. Do you plan on ordering one, or a pack?
Which iPad is the “standard” model?
This is actually a mildly confusing question to answer. Apple sells a tablet that’s simply called the “iPad.” Most people would quite reasonably assume that this is the “standard” iPad meant for everyone. The truth is that the plain “iPad” is really a cut-down model aimed at the education market — not mainstream users. That doesn’t mean it’s not a great tablet, just that it’s not really the iPad Apple is aiming at the majority of people.
Instead, it’s better to think of the iPad Air as the “standard” iPad. It uses the same generation of hardware and core quality of life innovations as the Pro models, with the main differences coming in the form of features that appeal to power users. So the plain iPad remains an affordable way to gain access to the Apple ecosystem, but it’s not the model I’d recommend most people should go for. With that slight detour out of the way, let’s look at the standard iPad vs iPad Pro.The key strengths of the iPad Pro
The iPad Pro commands a substantially higher price than the iPad Air, but what do those additional dollars get you? There are premium features both on the outside of these tablets and under the hood.
The other major external difference is the shift to USB-C, which is currently an iPad Pro exclusive. This makes it easy to find third-party docks and devices that work with the tablet. Especially since iPadOS brings support for peripherals such as external hard drives.
Under the hood, the A12X Bionic chip is substantially faster than the A12 Bionic in the iPad Air, making it suitable for jobs such as video editing using desktop-class editors such as Luma Fusion. The iPad Pro tablets are also available in storage configurations up to 1 TB, cementing their usefulness for serious creative professionals.The standard iPad experience
So, the iPad Pro tablets are superlative tablet computers, with overkill levels of performance and the best display and audio Apple has to offer. It’s arguably better than anyone else is offering at the moment, which might make you think that using something like an iPad Air means an unpleasant, compromised experience.
The truth is that the standard iPad experience is closer to the iPad Pro than the price difference would suggest. For users that mainly want to use their iPad for content consumption, gaming, and web browsing, the iPad Air is a great choice. You can even do light content work, if you’re willing to deal with more sluggish performance.
The iPad Air has actually inherited some of the best features from previous generation iPad Pros. It has TrueTone technology, which keeps colors consistent. It has the same laminated display technology, with excellent brightness and colors. It’s generally a better tablet than the original iPad Pro 9.7, released in 2024. It’s a tablet that plenty of people are still happy to use. The bottom line is that the vast majority of people who want an iPad should go for the standard iPad, which is the iPad Air.Standard iPad vs. iPad Pro: Who should buy an iPad Pro?
Let’s try to drill down the sort of person for whom the iPad Pro is the right choice. If your use case matches up with any of these, you’re a good candidate for the Pro over the Air.
You’re a technophile who simply wants the most powerful tablet money can buy.
iOS gaming matters to you and you’d like to get the best experience in cutting edge games such as Civilization VI or Grid Autosport.
You want to edit video, do photographic work, draw, or create music professionally.
You’re looking for a viable alternative to a MacBook.
You put a high priority on sheer audiovisual quality.
If these things matter to you, then the iPad Pro tablets certainly deliver a clearly better performance. With Apple heading toward a future where iPad hardware may even end up in MacBooks, it’s at the vanguard of that hybrid future. From that point of view, it’s certainly worth the price.
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Microsoft’s idea for a new Surface Book leaves MacBook Pro looking dull
Microsoft’s new Surface could adopt a very different screen hinge design, with newly-spotted patents suggesting the company is flirting with an iPad Pro-style floating hinge. Currently, the Surface Book has a detachable screen – which pulls away from the keyboard to form a standalone tablet – while the Surface Laptop adopts a more traditional notebook form-factor.
Microsoft’s well-praised industrial design has avoided any major changes over the Surface range’s lifespan, from the earliest shock at the Surface Book’s trick detachable screen. Since then, we’ve seen processor and graphics updates, among other things, but no dramatic aesthetic modifications. According to a new patent, though, that time may be at hand.
The filing, “Computing Device Hinges,” was published by the World Intellectual Property Organization on July 22. Spotted by WindowsUnited, it details a more complex hinge mechanism that could elevate the display above the base section. It would also allow that display to be pulled forward, closer to the user, making touchscreen and stylus use more straightforward.
It’s reminiscent, certainly, of the iPad Pro’s Magic Keyboard. That has a keyboard and trackpad, but also lifts Apple’s tablet above it so that it’s at a more ergonomically comfortable position.
In Microsoft’s design, the tablet section does not look like it releases from the base – unlike how the iPad Pro and the Magic Keyboard work – but instead the whole thing is a single, more flexible laptop. It’s not, as Windows Central points out, the first time we’ve seen such a concept from PC-makers. HP’s Elite Folio offers such a layout, allowing the touchscreen to be pulled forward so that it covers the laptop’s keyboard though not its touchpad.
Last year, meanwhile, the Acer ConceptD 7 Ezel took a similar approach. It promised mobile artists a workstation which could be used as a traditional laptop or as an art studio, courtesy of a dual-hinged screen.
If Microsoft goes ahead with the idea – and that’s a big “if” given patents regularly fail to pan out into actual production devices – it’s unclear what the form-factor might replace in the existing Surface line-up. Or, indeed, if it would add to it rather than supplant an existing model. The Surface Book remains a popular device, with its extra GPU and battery grunt in the keyboard section, but it’s questionable as to just how many people actually regularly remove and use the tablet screen section independently. This new design might allow for a more tablet-like experience but without having to sacrifice the GPU boost in the process.
Alternatively, the Surface Laptop – most recently the Surface Laptop 4, released earlier this year – could get a more user-friendly form factor. That might help emphasize Windows 11’s touch enhancements, and offer Microsoft a strong contender to the iPad Pro for those users who know they’re rarely going to want to be out of reach of a traditional keyboard.
Either way, it’s fair to say Microsoft has been imaginative when it comes to pushing back at the idea that only Apple innovates in portable computing right now. Not all of its projects have been entirely successful, mind. The Surface Neo, a clever dual-touchscreen device that was to bridge laptops and tablets, met with an unexpected hurdle earlier this month, when Intel announced the chipset it was meant to be using has been pushed into end-of-life status much earlier than anticipated.
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